Dog and cat meat sales have seen a spike in Vietnam and Cambodia during the coronavirus pandemic, an animal charity revealed.
Doctors have reportedly been telling people that the animals’ “natural properties” can help to fight off the coronavirus which has led to a large spike in sales of cat and dog meat, animal welfare group FOUR PAWS revealed.
As per an investigation, the market is so huge that even big restaurants are offering dog and cat dishes for takeaway on food delivery apps, The Sun reports. The news follows fears that the first reports of coronavirus were infected human beings at a live animal market in the city of Wuhan in China, at the end of last year.
According to a FOUR PAWS veterinarian, the practice of eating and consuming dot and cat meat carries a very high risk of new illnesses spreading. “The unsanitary conditions associated with the cat and dog meat trade, coupled with the contamination risks of having so many different animal species caged and killed alongside one another, present the perfect breeding ground for new and deadly diseases, like COVID-19,” she shared.
The charity has been urging governments to close “cruel” live markets which have been described as “ticking time bombs.”
The charity also added that Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh, has around 110 restaurants that serve dog meat which has been linked to cases of cholera, trichinella, and rabies.
One seller says that her community believes that eating dogs can help to prevent colds and other viral illnesses. It has also been said that medics and doctors have also been encouraging people that it is perfectly safe to eat as it is “natural, without chemicals,”
Even though Vietnam has a tradition of eating dog meat, the founder of the charity the Sound of Animals said, “There was a big increase in the number of Chinese workers coming to the country and they have bought many of their practices along with them.”
“Many of those, such as torture, have been introduced here and people believe that because China is a big and powerful country, that we should be listening to these practices.”
city of Wuhan recently lifted its month-long lockdown against COVID-19. However, the future of these businesses looks very uncertain given only a few customers buying what they offer as the virus stigma keeps people away.
Many stall owners in Wuhan shared they were not at all optimistic about their business given the strict lockdowns in China. The country had also ordered a temporary ban on trade and consumption of wildlife in January.
A fish shop worker who only shared her last name, Zhang, revealed, “There is no business and no one is coming. Everywhere is blocked and people cannot come in. Everyone is scared to go out and contract the virus,” Reuters reports.
A vegetable and meat vendor at the wet market added, “This is a person-to-person virus, no matter where you are. Even the supermarket is full of people. Here people are more scattered. As long as we take precautionary measures, and we pay attention to disinfecting, it should be fine.”